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First Caucasus Mountain Forum

The First Caucasus Mountain Forum took place at the end of last year – providing countries, academics and scientists with the tools needed to make sure that the region is sustainably managed.


The Caucasus is a unique mountain area situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, spanning six countries and bursting with forests, roaming wild fauna. The region, home to about fifty ethnic groups, is one of the world’s hotspots for biodiversity, providing a wide range of ecosystem services to local people and to lowland communities.


Cooperation across borders, sectors and fields of research is therefore needed to ensure the region’s people and environment are protected. To further this aim, the first ever Caucasus Mountain Forum was held from 27 November to 1 December 2016 in Tbilisi, Georgia.


Co-organised by UN Environment, the forum brought researchers and practitioners together from across the region. Scientists, academics and government experts discussed and flagged a range of topics to policymakers including hazard risk management, climate change, tourism, biodiversity conservation, water resources and hazard mapping.


The event was organised in cooperation with University of Geneva, the Swiss National Science Foundation, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and Caucasus Network for Sustainable Development of Mountain Regions.


Meanwhile, a new knowledge sharing platform created by UN Environment and the Carpathian Convention also serves to build regional ownership for the Caucasian mountains. The tool contains case studies from the region whereby a range of economic sectors have contributed to mountain biodiversity, including forestry and transport, and allows visitors to add their own positive examples.


The platform was presented at the 13th meeting of the Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity in December.


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